At one point or another, all Gilmore girls and guys have asked themselves, Is Stars Hollow a real place? Sadly, the answer is no. But it is based on a real place. In honor of returning to our favorite fictional sleepy Connecticut small town later this year via the Gilmore Girls Revival, let's visit the real places that inspired Stars Hollow.
The Real Stars Hollow: Washington, Connecticut
It was here at the Mayflower Grace Inn that Amy Sherman Palladino first got the inspiration for the quaint Connecticut town we know and love from Gilmore Girls. The Mayflower Grace looks bigger than the Dragonfly or the Independence in, but it's definitely got charm.
Palladino told the Deseret News about going to a diner while she was in Washington, and coming up with even more ideas for Gilmore Girls:
"We're driving by, and people are slowing down saying, 'Excuse me, where is the pumpkin patch?' And everything is green and people are out, and they're talking. And we went to a diner and everyone knew each other and someone got up and they walked behind the (counter) and they got their own coffee because the waitress was busy, and I'm, like, 'Is this out of central casting? Who staged this thing for me?"
On the rest of her trip, Palladino visited nearby hamlets Wallingford, East Haddam, Essex and Kent, ultimately combining everything she saw into one, timeless setting — Stars Hollow. Despite the sheer perfection she encountered in New England, the Gilmore Girls pilot was actually filmed in Unionville, Ontario in Canada. The remainder of the series was filmed in California.
Although they may have never returned to Connecticut during the actual filming process, Amy Sherman Palladino still managed to transfer that small-town New England charm to countless adoring fans:
“If I can make people feel this much of what I felt walking around this fairy town, I thought that would be wonderful.”
Mission accomplished, Amy. Brava!
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